Instant Pot Fish Tacos with Avocado and Lime Cream Sauce—lime marinated tilapia is pressure cooked quickly and then rolled up in a soft tortilla with lime sour cream, pico de gallo, shredded cabbage and avocados. A healthy, fresh and easy dinner recipe.
Instant Pot Fish Tacos
Each week in 2020 I’m sharing a recipe inspired by one of the 50 states. So far I’ve covered…
- South Carolina
- New Mexico
- West Virginia
- South Dakota
- North Dakota
See all the state recipes in one place.
Today’s recipe is inspired by the Golden State, California. California is the most populous state and is the 3rd largest in area. One out of every eight United States residents lives in California! It’s called the golden state because California’s development and remarkable prosperity began with the discovery of gold and the California Gold Rush that began in 1848. If California’s economic size were measured by itself to other countries, it would rank the 7th largest economy in the world!
When I think of California I think of beaches, sunsets, Redwoods trees, many sports teams, warm weather, traffic, Hollywood, Alcatraz, Ronald Reagan, earthquakes and much more! There really is just so much in the vast state of California.
Fish tacos served with avocados (California’s official state fruit) are very popular in southern California. They are inspired by the tasty fish tacos found in the seaside taquerias in Mexico.
Many fish tacos use fried fish or grilled fish but to make this 365 Days friendly I, of course, cooked the fish in my Instant Pot. It’s crazy because the fresh fish only needed a 2 minute pressure cooking time. So fast and so tasty!
I used an inexpensive and easy to find tilapia for my Instant Pot fish tacos. I also believe this would be tasty with cod, halibut or haddock. I used fresh fish without skin. This would also work fine with frozen fish (use a 4 minute pressure cook time instead of 2).
The best part of this meal is all the wonderful toppings that are added to the tacos. ESSENTIALS are sliced avocados and a lime-y cream sauce (I put my recipe in the recipe card below). NICE TO HAVE are cabbage, extra lime, cilantro and pico de gallo. Use your favorite type of tortilla. I loved the mini fajita size white corn tortillas. I warmed them on a griddle first which made them even tastier. My mouth is now salivating as I type this.
More Instant Pot Seafood Recipes…
Instant Pot Lemon Butter Garlic Salmon with Homestyle Vegetables
Alaska Cod Fish Tacos with Garlic Lime Sour Cream (slow cooker, instant pot or oven)
Instant Pot Lemon Garlic Parmesan Shrimp Pasta
Instant Pot Fish Tacos with Lime Cream Sauce
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Cook Time: 2 minutes (plus 5 minute NPR)
- Total Time: 22 minutes
- Yield: Serves 4-6 1x
For the fish:
- 1 1/2 pounds tilapia fillets (this was 4 large fillets)
- 1/2 cup lime juice
- 1 tsp lime zest
- 2 tsp chili powder
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp sea salt
For the sauce:
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1/4 cup mayonnaise
- 1 Tbsp lime juice
- 1 tsp lime zest
- 1/4 tsp cumin
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder
- 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1/4 tsp kosher salt
- Pico de gallo
- Shredded cabbage
- Lime wedges
- Chopped cilantro
- Sliced avocados
- Corn or flour tortillas
- Place fish in a flat bottomed pan in one even layer. Pour lime juice, zest, chili powder, garlic powder and salt over the top of the fish. Let them sit and marinate for 10 minutes. Then turn over the fish with a fork and let them sit for another 10 minutes.
- Pour 1 cup of water in the bottom of your Instant Pot liner. Place trivet in bottom of the pot. Place fish in one layer if possible, if not spread it out as much as possible.
- Cover the Instant Pot and secure the lid. Make sure valve is set to sealing. Set the manual/pressure cook button to 2 minute (for fresh fish) or 4 minutes (for frozen fillets). When time is up let the pot sit for 5 minutes and then move the valve to venting. Remove the lid. Fish should be at least 145°F in the middle.
- Place fish in a bowl and break it up with two forks. Salt and pepper to taste.
- Make the sauce by whisking the sour cream, mayo, lime juice, zest, cumin, garlic powder, cayenne and kosher salt together.
- Serve the fish wrapped in a warmed or grilled tortilla with sauce, cabbage, pico, a squeeze of lime, cilantro and plenty of avocado.
I used my 6 quart Instant Pot Duo 60 7 in 1*.
- Category: Seafood
- Method: Instant Pot
*Karen Petersen is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.
So easy pretty healthy and SO YUM!!!
Just delicious. Will be part of our regular rotation.
Another hit, thanks Karen.
Awesome so glad to hear it. Thanks for the 5 stars Heather!
Delicious as usual! Added Mexican blend cheese, avacados were not ripe yet (seems like they hardly ever are) but put guac in its place. Sauce was yummy, left out the salt and didn’t even miss it. Chopped up cilantro and added pico de gallo per your recipe. Really easy to throw together and a good time was had by all. Thanks for another winnerl
That sounds so fresh and delicious!
Delicious! This recipe represents the state well with the fish and avocados. Fresh and easy and would make again! Thanks!
I must say that CA is called the golden state because the hills and dead grass is golden at sunset in summer, fall, and winter, NOT because there was gold found here, that’s a misnomer.
I did not know that! ha!
What would I need to adjust, as far as water and cool times goes, for the same recipe size but in an 8 quart instant pot?
You should be good with the same time
This was excellent. I cooked the fillets for 3 minutes since they were slightly frozen, and they were perfectly cooked. The store only had red cabbage which offered a nice color contrast. Used 2% Fage yogurt in place of sour cream.
I love the red cabbage! Lots of color!
Karen, i love your recipes! I cook for a large family, and have to double everything. My Instant Pot isn’t big enough to space enough filets. What would the Temperature and Time be for baking them in the oven? thanks!
I would cook your fish for 18-20 minutes at 450°F, or until it reaches an internal temperature of 145°F and flakes easily with a fork.
Amy Anne says
Made this recently and I must admit I was a little skeptical at first. I grew up south of San Diego so I’m a bit of a fish taco snob. But wow, we all LOVED them! The sauce is pretty amazing, and the fish is so tender. It’s a bit messy to eat, but so good that you really don’t mind. Thanks for this one. It’s a keeper!
I’m jealous of you living in San Diego! Seems like the perfect place!
Roger Sroka says
I made coleslaw with 1/2 of the sauce, there are only 2 of us.
Outstanding recipe! This will be one of our regulars.
Thanks for posting!
You’re welcome Roger! I’m so happy you liked it 😊
Is the trivet required – would it burn without? Thanks!
One of the better fish taco recipes I’ve made. The sauce is the secret.
Definitely!!!! It’s everything.
I wonder how shrimp would work? I have frozen jumbo shrimp… Yummmm
Yum!! I love shrimp. I bet you could use them in a steamer basket with a 0 minute pressure cook time. They cook so fast!
JOHN VAN DOLAH says
I AM ON A LOW SALT LOW SUGAR DIET , DO YOU HAVE ANY RECIPES FOR ME???????
I don’t have specific low salt recipes but you could follow these recommendations from my facebook friends to alter my recipes:
You might can try the American heart association they may have some recipe links.
My big thing is I use zero salt Stock!
I would recommend reducing the salt added, as well as looking at the ingredients…all canned products have sodium added (you can rinse the beans), as well as sodium in things like Worcestershire sauce, boullion, soy sauce and canned cream soups. I work in healthcare and have this talk with others often.
Actually you can get ‘no salt added’ tomatoes and vegetables now. I have to eat low sodium so I am always scouting the can goods.
Yes, I should have phrased that better, as “most” and to search for the low sodium options, or use alternatives. I home can most of my own veggies, and with my IP, I just cook all my beans from dry and freeze the extra.
I use reduced sodium broth and skip the packets. Add my own spice when I can.
There are some excellent cookbooks and after reading their ratings and a few recipes it won’t take long to find several that follow low salt regime not just try.
Look on Amazon for “Instant Pot Dash diet recipes” there are several cookbooks available.
Not a resource per say but I use low sodium broth, no added salt and read labels. Many spice blends have added salt and I don’t use them
Since cooking with the IP is primarily from scratch and not using processed foods you control the sodium by controlling the salt. I prefer to use my own homemade broth but sometimes use broth powder but do by the low sodium. She can also avoid soy sauce and some of those Asian sauces that are high in sodium by making her own. Actually cooking with the IP is already inherently low sodium!
I’ve been using Magic seasonings for years. Great flavor and lower sodium. Created by Chef Paul Prudhomme in New Orleans.
Carefully read all ingredients on stocks tomatoes etc. For example, you can find low sodium chicken broth at 120 mg per serving or 540mg per serving. Chinese food is an option if you use coconut aminos instead of soy sauce.
Rinse and drain can beans when using in a recipe.
I just use low sodium ingredients
Just use no salt canned items when you are cooking, non injected pork and chicken, and stay away from the Better Than Buillon as it is horribly high in sodium. You can find no salt Swanson’s chicken and beef broth or Herb Ox no salt Buillons online. I eat low sodium, and the recipes are really easy to convert.
Sounds delicious and can’t wait to make them!
Can lemon replace the lime
Sounds delicious and can’t wait to make them!
Can lemon replace the lime
I’m sure lemon would be delish!
Great, I’m trying to use what I already have!!
I bet lemon would be great!
Martha B says
Ok, I was wondering what our recipe was going to be and I’m very happy with fish tacos.
Thanks Martha! They were so tasty!